Lost Hiker, 64, Recounts 6-Day Ordeal in Desert

He moved as little as possible during the day
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 5, 2010 4:34 PM CDT
Ed Rosenthal displays his hat on which he wrote final instructions and last messages while being lost inside Joshua Tree National Park.   (AP)
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(Newser) – A 64-year-old man who survived for six days after getting lost in California's Joshua Tree desert says he survived by staying in shade during the day and walking during the cold nights. Edward Rosenthal said he intended a short walk but got distracted when he took a wrong turn and lost the trail. "I tried to stay calm and focused," he said today, a day after being released from the hospital. "I tried not to get excited because if you do that, you die."

He otherwise occupied himself by writing what he assumed were to be his last words on his sun hat, expressing his love for his wife and daughter along with instructions for his funeral. When a rescue helicopter found Rosenthal on September 30, he was so weak he could not sit up. "My legs were finished, because I never walked that far." More from the LA Times and AP.

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